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Northern Va. Lawmaker To Push For Bag Tax Again

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Montgomery County will start charging 5 cents per bag in 2012.
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Montgomery County will start charging 5 cents per bag in 2012.

In Virginia, some state lawmakers think the Commonwealth should follow D.C.'s lead and implement a tax on plastic bags in an effort to help clean up the what they call the environmental mess the bags cause.

Delegate Joseph Morrissey of Henrico County has already signaled his intention to call for a 20 cent tax on plastic bags.

Delegate Adam Ebbin, a fellow Democrat from Alexandria, is introducing his own bag tax proposal, one he says is more modest.

"I'm going to focus on 5 cents, and hope that that realistic request is considered seriously," Ebbin says.

On Tuesday, leaders in D.C.'s Department of the Environment revealed that the city's bag tax had raised nearly $2 million in its first year, and caused residents to use 215 million fewer bags than the year before.

But it is expected to be a tougher sell in Virginia, both Morrissey and Ebbin offered the same proposals during last year's session, and both bills were defeated by opponents who said a bag tax would be onerous on consumers and businesses.

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